Why a Postgraduate Educational Management Degree is Needed in SA

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The education industry is ever-evolving.

People worldwide need education to advance their knowledge, so they’re equipped for different jobs to earn a living and build a future.

At the forefront of education, leaders must implement the processes that enable teaching and learning.

MANCOSA offers a BEd Honours Educational Leadership and Management that’ll enable you to pursue a career as an educational leader.

In this article, we’ll have a look at what educational management is and why it’s essential. We’ll also discuss the key differences between management and teaching so you can choose the best path for your career goals.

What is educational management and leadership?

Educational management and leadership is the process of leading and administering tasks related to educational institutions such as schools and universities. These institutions have goals and objectives that can only be achieved with a management system.

Some key responsibilities of a school management system include:

  • Teaching and learning
  • Assessment and evaluation
  • Strategic planning
  • Engagement with roleplayers and stakeholders
  • Funding
  • Resource management
  • Staff management
  • And more

There are several ways educational leaders can implement these processes in schools.

For example, school management software has become more popular today since it boosts activities and learning systems. Here are some of the main benefits of having school management software.

  • Better exam management: School management software can help teachers conduct exams. It allows them to upload exams in different formats, randomise questions to prevent cheating, and more. Alternatively, if a teacher prefers pen and paper, they can use the system for other purposes, such as keeping track of grades, calculating student performance throughout the semester, etc.
  • More organised digital learning material: An e-learning school management system houses materials students can download, complete, and submit. Students and lecturers can upload documentation as long as they’re authorised — eliminating the need to carry heavy textbooks.
  • Easier attendance record keeping: A cloud-based school system allows lecturers to record and review attendance with the click of a few buttons. Furthermore, teachers can use the system to notify parents of their children’s absence by sending an SMS. This way, parents are alerted in case children skip class without permission.
  • Effortless student admission: These systems remove the chaos of student admissions by allowing students to upload all required documents to the system. This eliminates the risk of entries being lost. Furthermore, once students are accepted, they can upload their personal information and will always be able to access it.

The difference between educational management and teaching

Educational management and teaching are completely different. While one focuses more on providing an environment where teaching can occur, the other involves actual education and lesson creation.

  • Educational management
    Management involves creating and maintaining an environment where teaching and learning occur efficiently.

    It deals with the operations put into place to keep the gears turning. The primary purpose of educational management is to provide an efficient environment for teachers and learners.

    Institution objectives differ from school to school. Thus, the school management system principles must be aligned with the specific goals.

    Furthermore, management should also keep possible technological and cultural advancements in mind to deal with planned programs and unplanned changes.
  • Teaching
    Teaching involves planning, organising, directing, and implementing lessons. It uses both materials and human resources to enable effective learning.

    Teachers advise, test, and teach students in various subjects. They also often need to use visual or audio teaching methods to facilitate learning and are responsible for assigning homework, grading tests, and more. Discover more about What you need to become a teacher in South Africa.

Why is leadership important in educational management?

Institutions need qualified professionals to manage and implement these systems to have an efficient school management system. Good leadership in schools is vital for improving the learning outcomes of students.

Whereas leadership is focused on vision, the future, motivation, and teams, management provides the systems for the effective day-to-day running of the school.

Thus, without leadership, there is nothing to work towards. In other words, proper systems can only be implemented with the vision and motivation for effective operations.

Here are some of the main reasons why effective leadership is vital for teacher success and student outcomes:

1. School leaders set up excellent teaching practices
School leaders can support teachers and students by setting up effective teaching practices. They can consider the motivations and talents of students, parents, and teachers, inspire inclusive learning cultures, and provide individualised teacher training.

2. School leaders motivate others during difficult times
Strong school leaders need to showcase resilience and recovery when difficult times come. They must put their foot forward and inspire others to do the same.

For example, the Covid-19 pandemic severely disrupted education. During that time, school leaders were responsible for adapting to these challenging circumstances.

In fact, the best school leaders don’t just handle these situations, but they seize opportunities amid crises. This is evident in that many schools used remote learning tools to keep their processes running during the pandemic.

3. School leaders know the needs of their school
School leaders are more familiar with the needs of their students and personnel, making them better equipped to create and execute decisions.

Many school leaders get to make their own decisions on curricula, budgets, and personnel rather than being restricted by government policies.

As a result, schools can adjust to changing educational expectations and the needs of their students and stakeholders.

Study a Bachelor of Education Honours in Educational Leadership and Management

Are you interested in taking your education to the next level? Do you want to become a school leader?

Have a look at the Bed Honours in Educational Leadership and Management. This 1-year educational management course will provide you with the skills and knowledge needed to become a leader.

It’ll enable you to pursue management roles within institutions such as schools, universities, colleges, and more.

Author: Michael Naidoo (MANCOSA: Academic Programme Manager)